Henrico County unveils plan for new sports complex that would replace Virginia Center Commons

Henrico County

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Henrico officials say they plan to move forward with a local company’s proposal to build a new multi-million dollar sports complex in Glen Allen.

County leaders say the new sports complex, estimated to be about 200,000 square feet, is set to replace the Virginia Center Commons Mall. Once built, the new indoor sports venue will house a convocation center for graduations, basketball courts and more.

“Virginia Center Commons location just couldn’t be more perfect,” said Recreation and Parks Director Niel Luther. “A once in a generational opportunity.”

Luther said the convenient, central location of the Virginia Center Commons was a pivotal selling point.

“In terms of central access for residents from the east to the west and also convenient for folks who are visiting from out of town,” Luther said.

The roughly $50 million sports complex will be built by local construction company Rebkee. The Richmond company was chosen as a result of its plan to redevelop Virginia Center Commons. But what happens to the mall’s current structure is still up in the air, according to developers.

“It could be where essentially you have a major renovation to the existing mall building that people are familiar with and they get readapted,” Luther said. “It could be a teardown and it could be a ground-up build.”

RELATED: Sears in Glen Allen among 29 stores closing in 2019

It’s why Luther says developers are looking at all options, with cost efficiency in mind.

“The mall itself has an added benefit because it’s not a greenfield site, in other words, it has all the parking there, it has all the infrastructure that we would need in order to build this sports facility, it is already in place so there’s a huge advantage, cost advantage, in terms of this particular property,” Luther said.

The Henrico Board of Supervisors met Tuesday night to vote on whether or not to move forward with the current plan. The board authorized negotiations for the sports complex that would be developed on the property of Virginia Center Commons mall.

With its unanimous vote, the board accepted the recommendation of a working group and County Manager John A. Vithoulkas to enter formal talks with The Rebkee Company. 

County leaders say the sports complex would likely be completed within a year or a year and a half.

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